5 of the quirkiest sights in Porto

1) Lavadouro Público da Afurada

In the heart of the charming fishing village of Afurada in Gaia, there’s a public laundry with old-fashioned water tanks, where locals go to wash their daily load by hand. The clothes drying outside on an improvised web of ropes could just as well be part of a superb modern art exhibition.

art installations at the Afurada neighbourhood in Porto

Rua da Praia 147, São Pedro da Afurada

2) Forte de São João Baptista da Foz

This sea-facing 16th-century fort is overlooked by most tourists. It’s a curious place to explore and the views are fabulous, but there’s a surprising sight waiting to be discovered. Lawn Tennis Club da Foz is housed within the castle and you’ll be able to see gravel courts through some of the fort’s stone-framed windows.

exterior of the Forte de São João Baptista against a blue sky

Esplanada do Castelo

More hidden secrets of Porto?

Discover Porto off the beaten track: this guide lists 500 places to eat, drink, sleep, discover, and enjoy this beautitful city. Available in our bookshop now.

Buy the book or ebook

3) Forte de São Francisco Xavier

This fort has been nicknamed ‘Castelo do Queijo’ (Castle of the Cheese), and few locals know its real name. Legend has it that the shape of the rock upon which it stands on the beach, resembled that of cheese. Inside, there’s a tiny museum showcasing historical weapons. Entry costs just 50 cents.

an aerial view of the coastline and Fort of Saint Francisco Xavier in Porto

Praça de Gonçalves Zarco 20

4) Desenhos Eróticos by Siza

It’s so easy to blink and miss these small erotic drawings in São Bento Metro Station. Pay attention to the azulejo tiles on some of the rounded pillars and you will see them. The drawings are by Porto architect Álvaro Siza.

small drawing inside of the Sao Bento metro station in Porto

Manuel de Sousa

(at: São Bento Metro Station) Praça de Almeida Garrett

5) A Menina Nua

This eye-catching sculpture by Henrique Moreira is mostly known as A Menina Nua (The Naked Girl) but its actual name is Juventude (Youth). It depicts a naked girl sitting peacefully with an enigmatic smile on her face, and it has been standing in a fountain in Avenida dos Aliados since 1929.

statue of A Menina Nua in Porto against a bright blue sky

Avenida dos Aliados

Join the community

Sign up for free to gain unlimited access to the website. Plus, you'll receive a 10% discount in our online bookshop.

Sign up